Greengage and City of Trees

What is City of Trees?

City of trees is an exciting and innovative project in Greater Manchester which is set to rejuvenate the landscape by transforming underused and unloved woodlands and planting a tree for every person that lives in the Greater Manchester region.

Initiated by The Oglesby Charitable Trust and Community Forest Trust, the goals include planting three million trees across Greater Manchester and bringing back 2,000 hectares of unmanaged woodland into the community. With the belief that trees are paramount to the future of all cities and towns, a further goal of City of Trees includes connecting people to the trees and woodland around them and thereby enabling a healthier, more resilient and prosperous city.

As detailed by the City of Trees, street trees provide a host of benefits including:

  • Trees and woods can help to improve the quality of our air, cool our warming planet, reduce the risk of flooding as well as act as carbon storage;
  • Trees provide an important introduction to the natural world for our children and help to create jobs and opportunities;
  • Urban/City trees help to reduce noise pollution, provide shelter and have been shown to encourage exercise;
  • Trees help us breathe easier and have been shown to improve our health and wellbeing in multiple ways as well as being an excellent at bringing people and communities together
  • Trees impact the economy in a positive way and can be assigned and seen as a monetary asset; and
  • Trees provide important habitat for wildlife and biodiversity in general.

Further information on the value of street trees can be found on the City of Trees website.

A key project being undertaken by City of Trees is the ‘All Our Trees’ initiative which will result in the production of a tree and woodland strategy for GM. Through this process, the value of the ecosystem services and the economic benefit that the combined trees and woodland in Greater Manchester bring to the city region will be calculated using the i-Tree Eco software. The software, which was developed by the US Forestry Service, uses data gathered by surveyors including tree species, height, width and diameter of each tree. The surveyors, who will gather the information on trees in random sample plots, will also collect information on the trees health and general condition.

The information will be used to assess where new tree planting is needed, help protect existing trees and woodland, contribute to the new Northern Forest proposals and help frame new policy and planning decisions which gets trees and woodlands up the agenda.

How are Greengage assisting?

Greengage are passionate about the benefit and impact trees can have on people’s lives and the importance they play in city and other urban locations. We are strong advocates for incorporating Green Infrastructure in to new developments and trees are a significant part of this.  Furthermore, we have in-house staff who are highly experienced at undertaking large scale biodiversity and arboricultural surveys, gathering the data on the ground and then analysing such data including the use of i-Tree Software.

To assist with this project, we are providing four of our experienced ecologists who will be assisting with the collection of the data in areas in and around Manchester.  We are also funding a graduate placement for 3 months to assist with the data collection, input and analysis.